Albuquerque-based Sandia Area Federal Credit Union is building a full-service branch on Santa Fe’s south side at Cerrillos Road and Tierra Contenta Drive in the Entrada Contenta Center.

The credit union has had a small presence in Santa Fe since March 2014 when it acquired Permaculture Credit Union and its office at 4001 Office Court Drive, Suite 504, south of Santa Fe Place.

That branch has no teller windows or drive-thru and focuses more on auto loans and home equity loans than checking accounts, credit union CEO Paula Peknik said.

“We get a lot of our members from auto dealers,” Peknik said. “Now we are ready for a full-service branch. Our members want a full-service branch.”

The credit union has 4,400 members in Santa Fe and 70,400 members overall.

Peknik expects the new branch to open in the fall. Construction started June 7 with Hart Construction as the general contractor.

The 3,500-square-foot building will have four teller windows, two drive-thru lanes and a drive-up ATM, Peknik said.

The credit union has seven branches — four in Albuquerque, one in Rio Rancho, one at Kirtland Air Force Base and one in Santa Fe. The Office Court location will close when the Cerrillos Road branch opens.

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